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Recreation is a legitimate and civil right

The absence of the ordinary for a long time can turn the unordinary into something normal.

Turki Aldakhil

Published: Updated:

The absence of the ordinary for a long time can turn the unordinary into something normal. An example is the commission for recreation and culture that Saudi Arabia will form following a royal decree last week. Violating one’s right to recreation would be a disaster.

The early Islamic period did not have a committee to issue religious edicts, or universities for learning, because the number of people and their needs did not require them.

However, the number of people and their needs have increased and life has become more complicated, thus requiring organization via mechanisms, regulations and structures. Offices were established and people employed to handle state affairs.

Development

Recreation urgently needs to be looked after and developed into an industry that offers people a better life and develops the economy. Asef Bayat, a sociology instructor at Leiden University in The Netherlands who conducted extensive research on Islamism and the politics of fun, said: “Islam did not provide a specific theory about fun.

Recreation urgently needs to be looked after and developed into an industry that offers people a better life and develops the economy

Turki Al-Dakhil

Meaning, Islam did not speak about fun as a prohibition, but it set the condition that it does not distract one from praying.”
Having fun is not forbidden. It is everyone’s indisputable right, like enjoying nature and beauty.

This article was first published by al-Bayan on May 12, 2016.
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Turki Al-Dakhil is the General Manager of Al Arabiya News Channel. He began his career as a print journalist, covering politics and culture for the Saudi newspapers Okaz, Al-Riyadh and Al-Watan. He then moved to pan-Arab daily Al-Hayat and pan-Arab news magazine Al-Majalla. Turki later became a radio correspondent for the French-owned pan-Arab Radio Monte Carlo and MBC FM. He proceeded to Elaph, an online news magazine and Alarabiya.net, the news channel’s online platform. Over a ten-year period, Dakhil’s weekly Al Arabiya talk show “Edaat” (Spotlights) provided an opportunity for proponents of Arab and Islamic social reform to make their case to a mass audience. Turki also owns Al Mesbar Studies and Research Centre and Madarek Publishing House in Dubai. He has received several awards and honors, including the America Abroad Media annual award for his role in supporting civil society, human rights and advancing women’s roles in Gulf societies. He tweets @TurkiAldakhil.

Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not reflect Al Arabiya English's point-of-view.